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Legal professionals and democracy: local-global strugles to reshape professional forces in the judicial and public safety systems

Grant number: 21/12714-4
Support Opportunities:Research Projects - Thematic Grants
Duration: July 01, 2023 - June 30, 2028
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Sociology
Principal Investigator:Maria da Gloria Bonelli
Grantee:Maria da Gloria Bonelli
Host Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Pesquisadores principais:
Jacqueline Sinhoretto
Associated researchers:Fabiana Luci de Oliveira ; Fabio Costa Morais de Sá e Silva ; Fiona Jane Macaulay ; Frederico Normanha Ribeiro de Almeida ; Sida Liu
Associated scholarship(s):24/02853-5 - Practices, discourses and movements on the border between the justice and public security professions: legislative changes and judicial controversies (2016-2023), BP.TT
23/15541-9 - Anti-democratic practices, discourses and movements on the border between the professions of justice and public security: external control of military police action, BP.TT
23/18383-5 - Disputes in the legal professions regarding the democratic rule of law, the boundaries with politics and the global-local flows of anti-democratic ideas, BP.PD
+ associated scholarships 23/13510-9 - Erosion and democratic resistance in the constitutionality control of federal policies by the STF in the period 2019-2022, BP.IC
23/13628-0 - The professional tug-of-war between democratic and antidemocratic agenda among Brazilian lawyers., BP.IC
23/12940-0 - Professionalism and gender in the tug of war between democratic and antidemocratic agenda in the legal profession, BP.TT
23/13345-8 - Importation/exportation of antidemocratic political-juridical ideas and models in justice and security within the Brazil/USA axis: Mapping of Actors and Networks., BP.TT
23/13218-6 - Role of professional women in legal-moral disputes across the borders of public safety, criminal justice and politics., BP.TT - associated scholarships

Abstract

The relationship between legal professions and politics occupies a central place within Brazilian social science and political debate. Classical studies converge in their understanding that legal professionals comprise an ambiguous group which generally shares a moderate liberalism, tending towards conservatism. Contemporarily, this pendulum has swung in an antidemocratic direction. This suggests the emergence of conflicts around legal and public safety professions' relationship to democracy. Our point of departure here are contemporary developments within the sociology of professions, and in particular, the understanding that the social construction of professions occurs not only through the establishment of tight boundaries to demarcate a professional practice, but also a sort of blurring of boundaries - between the professional and the political, or between different established types of profession. Our proposal aims at a better understanding of this intriguing scenario. We work with the image of a "tug-of-war" between democratic and antidemocratic positions, seeking to observe and understand the different meanings that such tensions may acquire on the boundaries between professions and politics, between professional segments or between justice and public safety professionals. For these purposes, we propose the use of multiple methods, including a survey of justice and public safety elites, collection and analysis of documents, inquiry into media and social networks, observation of institutional practices and semi-structured interviews with legal and public safety professionals. (AU)

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